Microtrends: The Small Forces Behind Tomorrow’s Big Changes. Mark Penn, E. Kinney Zalesne. Twelve.

Microtrends: The Small Forces Behind Tomorrow's Big Changes Book Cover Microtrends: The Small Forces Behind Tomorrow's Big Changes
Mark Penn, E. Kinney Zalesne
September 5, 2007

In 1982, readers discovered Megatrends. In 2000, The Tipping Point entered the lexicon.

Now, in Microtrends, one of the most respected and sought-after analysts in the world articulates a new way of understanding how we live.

Mark Penn, the man who identified “Soccer Moms” as a crucial constituency in President Clinton’s 1996 reelection campaign, is known for his ability to detect relatively small patterns of behavior in our culture – microtrends that are wielding great influence on business, politics, and our personal lives. Only one percent of the public, or three million people, is enough to launch a business or social movement.

Relying on some the best data available, Penn identifies more than 70 microtrends in religion, leisure, politics, and family life that are changing the way we live. Among them:

  • People are retiring but continuing to work.
  • Teens are turning to knitting.
  • Geeks are becoming the most sociable people around.
  • Women are driving technology.
  • Dads are older than ever and spending more time with their kids than in the past.

You have to look at and interpret data to know what’s going on, and that conventional wisdom is almost always wrong and outdated. The nation is no longer a melting pot. We are a collection of communities with many individual tastes and lifestyles. Those who recognize these emerging groups will prosper.

Penn shows readers how to identify the microtrends the can transform a business enterprise, tip an election, spark a movement, or change your life. In today’s world, small groups can have the biggest impact.

Mark J. Penn is widely regarded as the most perceptive pollster in American politics. He is the worldwide CEO of Burson-Marsteller and chief advisor to Senator Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. Penn has been an advisor to numerous Fortune 500 corporations and 25 foreign heads of state.

E. Kinney Zalesne has served as a White House Fellow, counsel to U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno, and executive vice president and president of two national social-change organizations.